Alabama to revise controversial immigration law

Governor says he doesn’t plan to weaken or repeal it

Alabama’s governor announced last Friday that he will revise the state’s immigration law—the same one that caused it last week to consider hiring prisoners to replace the immigrant workers scared away by the stringent regulations.

Hailed as one of, if not the, toughest immigration laws in the country, a U.S. appeals court last month blocked one of its provisions requiring public schools to determine children’s legal residency before enrolling them.

However, the appeals court let stand an edict requiring police to detain anyone suspected of being illegal if they cannot produce proper documentation at any time. Two foreign autoworkers were recently detained because of the clause, and the state suffered significant negative publicity as a result.

In light of those events, the state is considering revising the law, but Republican Gov. Robert Bentley said he has no plans to repeal or weaken it, Thomson Reuters reports.

"We recognize that changes are needed to ensure that Alabama has not only the nation's most effective law, but one that is fair and just, promotes economic growth, preserves jobs for those in Alabama legally, and can be enforced effectively and without prejudice," Gov. Bentley said in a statement.

Perhaps Gov. Bentley will be lucky enough to avoid Arizona’s fate. The Supreme Court today announced that it would decide whether Arizona is allowed to impose similarly tough immigration standards, which were blocked from enforcement by the 9th Circuit last April.

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